- Leonard Mustazza
Sinatra, Frank (12 December 1915–14 May 1998), singer and actor, was born Francis Albert Sinatra in Hoboken, New Jersey, the son of Anthony Martin Sinatra, a captain with the Hoboken Fire Department, and Natalie Catherine “Dolly” Garavente Sinatra, a Democratic Party committeewoman. The child of Italian immigrants, Sinatra was born in a four-story tenement on Gordon Street in Hoboken's “Little Italy” section. The thirteen-and-a-half-pound baby almost died at birth, and the doctor's forceps used to extricate him from his diminutive mother scarred his ear and neck, wounds he bore for his entire life. The baby was baptized on 2 April 1916 at St. Francis Church in Hoboken. Because his working-class parents were busy trying to earn a living, Sinatra grew up a lonely boy who spent a great deal of time alone or with his grandparents and other relatives. He attended David E. Rue Junior High School and A. J. Demarest High School, from which he never graduated. Although his mother had hoped that he would be the first person in the family to attend college and was disappointed that he did not finish high school, she encouraged his ambition to be a singer. His father, on the other hand, was opposed and insisted that he should find a job. The young Sinatra worked briefly as a truck driver for a newspaper, a riveter in a Hoboken shipyard, and a fruit hauler. By 1932, he had decided that he wanted to be a professional singer, and, with $65 borrowed from his parents, he bought a portable sound system—consisting of a microphone and speaker—and some sheet-music arrangements....